There’s monitoring and then there is monitoring…. Dashboards have become very popular tools for monitoring and measuring all kinds of activities. Based on the metaphor of the car dashboard, these dashboards are supposed to give you the information that you need at a glance.

The flawed assumption is that dashboards are accurately monitoring everything that you think is important or could potentially get you in trouble. While car dashboards now provide more information about potential danger, they are still rather limited in what they are monitoring.

The fascination with dashboards in “management world” is another thing that sounds good in theory but is potentially insidious in reality. The dashboard gives you the illusion of control.

It is one thing if you make your own dashboard, but quite another if you are using an ‘off the shelf’ dashboard from latest and greatest all-in-one web based management tool.

The unstated and underlying assumption is that everybody should be watching the same thing. And while that may be true to some extent it is certainly not sufficient to differentiate and excel.

It is important for your organization to truly be notable for something in order to give your organization an edge. To run your business according to templated best practices and metrics as everyone else will surely lead to less than outstanding results.